How to get that winning feeling: When awards can bring you fame and fortune, it is vital to give yourself the best chance of winning

Everyone knows it’s the taking part, not the winning that counts.

Everyone knows it’s the taking part, not the winning that


But last year’s PR Week Award winners agree nothing can beat the moment

when they climbed on stage to collect their gong.

And it doesn’t stop there. As our winners testify, as well as giving

team members a boost, a PR Week Award can lead to increased profile

within the industry, attracting both potential recruits and new


So what is the best way to win an award? The good news is that there are

categories covering every aspect of public relations and public affairs,

giving everyone a chance to enter.

The bad news is, of course, entrants are up against stiff


Last year, the awards attracted over 600 entries.

One of the best ways to ensure your place on the shortlist is to imagine

you are a judge. Ask yourself: does my entry fit the category criteria;

have I made the best possible submission; and does it show a winning

combination of creativity and effectiveness? Remember that judges will

be more impressed by a cost-effective and innovative campaign, than one

which is chiefly remarkable for having a spectacular budget.

In keeping with PR Week’s continuing commitment to research and

evaluation, a new category has been added this year - The Proof Award.

This award will go to the campaign, project or programme that shows the

most effective use of research and evaluation in both setting its aim

and measuring its success.

Finally, remember to read the form carefully and stick to the rules.

There is no point submitting four pages, when only two are required, or

failing to supply information requested in the entry rules. It is a

waste of time and of an entry fee because entrants who do not follow the

rules will be automatically excluded.

Most fundamental of all, don’t forget to enter. There’s nothing more

galling than watching someone else pick up a trophy you think you could

have won. But one thing is for certain, you’ll never win if you don’t

give yourself the chance.

The closing date for all entries is Friday 17 July. The awards dinner,

which last year attracted over 1,200 guests, will be held at the

Grosvenor House Hotel on Tuesday 27 October.

For entry forms and further information, call Helen Thomas at Haymarket

Events on 0171 413 4391.


Who are the judges?

Around half of the judging panel, which last year stood at 24, will be

PR professionals working in in-house departments and PR


The remainder will be drawn from media, marketing, City and political

backgrounds. The full list of judges will be made available after the

close of entries.

How does the judging work?

It takes place over two days. Each day the judges will be divided into

groups, and each group will consider a selection of categories. On the

basis of marks alloted by all the judges individually, a maximum of five

entries from each category will be chosen to go through to the final on

the second day of judging. Winners and commendations will be decided

from these finalists, based on their combined scores in rounds one and

two. Each judge’s marks are kept confidential so that the identities of

the winners are not known until the awards night.

What are the judges looking for?

In a nutshell, all entries must show evidence of creativity,

originality, cost-effectiveness, relation to objective and outcome.

Added to this, winners will all bring something extra with them, a

unique or innovative approach.

Given the increased importance research and evaluation is now playing in

PR, winning entries will all need to demonstrate the success of the work

with concrete results.


Caroline Ashe, director

Countrywide Porter Novelli Healthcare

Best Healthcare Campaign 1997

’We don’t just enter awards for the glory of winning, it is actually a

very good way of demonstrating our effectiveness. The fact that we won

with the ’Sex and Depression’ campaign illustrates one of our great

strengths - to take quite complex sensitive health subjects out to the

mass media market in a way that delivers measurable results.’

Amanda Barry, managing director,

Amanda Barry Communications,

Best Small Consultancy 1997

’Winning the Best Small Consultancy award has boosted our business in

many ways, from giving our existing team the ultimate recognition for

their work, to attracting new top quality people to the consultancy.

We’ve also been invited on to pitch lists that we wouldn’t have been

considered for before and there can be no better result that that.’

Paul Barber, group corporate affairs director, Inchcape,

In-House Department of the Year 1997

’We were very pleased to win and saw it as recognition for all our hard

work during a very difficult period for the company in general. Winning

the award had a motivational effect on the team; it was very good for

the company’s reputation and the individuals who are part of that


Lara Bayley, managing director,

Scribe Marketing and Communications

Young Achiever 1997

’Perhaps the best thing of all for me was the judge’s quote about our

approach signalling the age of the over-hyped, over-sold PR offer to

business being well and truly over. It summed up exactly what we are all

about and as a new company it was excellent to have industry recognition

of that. ’

Lesley Brend, managing director,

The Red Consultancy

Best Technology Campaign 1997

’Winning a PR Week Award is like getting straight As on your school

report. It’s knowing you’ve excelled in every single aspect of the

campaign - not just bits of it. We knew with MSN Street we had award

winning concept, but it’s a long journey from concept to results. Along

the way, we squeezed every possible benefit out of the campaign for the

client - and then measured those benefits against objectives.’

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Already registered?
Sign in